NOTE: References to both "Shaw" and "Crompton" redirect here.
Shaw and Crompton has been, since 1974, a town and civil parish within the Metropolitan Borough of Oldham, in Greater Manchester, England. It lies on the River Beal at the foothills of the South Pennines, 2.3 miles (3.7 km) north of Oldham, 3.6 miles (5.8 km) southeast of Rochdale, and 8.7 miles (14 km) to the northeast of the city of Manchester. It is regularly referred to as Shaw.
Prior to 1974 the town was in Lancashire. Crompton (as it was originally known) and its surroundings have provided evidence of ancient British and Anglian activity in the area. During the Middle Ages, Crompton formed a small township of scattered woods, farmsteads, moorland, and swamp with a small and close community of families. The local lordship was weak or absent, and so Crompton failed to emerge as a manor with its own lord and court. Farming was the main industry of this broadly independent and self-supporting rural area, with locals supplementing their incomes by hand-loom woollen weaving in their homes.
The introduction of textile manufacture during the Industrial Revolution initiated a process of rapid and unplanned urbanisation. A building boom began in Crompton during the mid-19th century, when suitable land for factories in Oldham was becoming scarce. By the late 19th century Crompton had emerged as a densely populated mill town. Forty-eight cotton mills—-some of the largest in the United Kingdom—-have been recorded as existing in the area. At its spinning zenith, as a result of an interwar economic boom associated with the textile industry, Shaw and Crompton was reported to have had more millionaires per capita than any other town in the world. Imports of foreign cotton goods began the decline in the region's textile industry during the mid-20th century; Shaw and Crompton's last mill closed in 1989.
Shaw and Crompton, which covers 4.5 square miles (11.7 km2), is a predominantly suburban area of mixed affluence with a population of 21,721 in 2001.
The dual name of both Shaw and Crompton has been said to make the town "distinctive, if not unique", while preference of Shaw over Crompton and vice versa has been (and to a limited extent remains) a minor local controversy and point of confusion. Today, the single name of Shaw seems to have won preference in the locality. The names merged to form the present day Shaw and Crompton, which boundary markers have used since at least the 1950s.
Shaw was originally a hamlet and sub-district of Crompton, and appears to have originated as the commercial and ecclesiastic centre of Crompton because of a small chapel sited there dating back to the 16th century. Before then, Whitfield had been the largest village in Crompton. In 1872, Shaw was noted as one of three villages in Crompton. However, due to Shaw's urbanisation following the construction of a major road from Wernith to Littleborough, and the establishment of a post office sub-district named and situated in Shaw, it came to dominate Crompton. Additionally, a separate ecclesiastical parish was created for the township in 1835, which was given the name Shaw because of the church's location on Shaw Moor, in Crompton.
Following the Poor Law Amendment Act 1834, Crompton formed part of the Oldham Poor Law Union, an inter-parish unit established to provide social security. Crompton's first local authority was a Local board of health established in 1863. Established with reference to the Local Government Act 1858, Crompton Local Board of Health was a regulatory body responsible for standards of hygiene and sanitation in the township. Following the Local Government Act 1894, the area of the Local Board became the Crompton Urban District, a local government district within the administrative county of Lancashire.
Under the Local Government Act 1972, the town's urban district status was abolished, and the area has, since 1 April 1974, formed part of the Metropolitan Borough of Oldham, a local government district of the metropolitan county of Greater Manchester. A [modern] civil parish of Crompton was formed in April 1987 and renamed to "Shaw and Crompton" in July 1987.
For more information, see the EN Wikipedia article Shaw and Crompton.